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Health and Emotional Concerns


Maj Patel
It’s not unusual to feel concerned about your health and to worry about your cancer coming back, especially during the first year after your treatment. This is one of the most common fears people have after cancer treatment, causing many patients to lose sleep and experience depression or a sense of despair. Major Spencer, can you give us some tips on dealing with these concerns?

Maj Spencer
Of course, Dr. Patel. It’s important to be aware of your emotional health, and to seek help when necessary. You may find it helpful to talk openly with friends and family. Your provider can also refer you to a support group or counselor.

Other patients find that the time after treatment is hopeful and filled with a sense of accomplishment. Living one day at a time, and making the most of each day are positive reactions to what is often a difficult time.

Over time, most survivors will think about their cancer less often, although some events can cause the worry and concern to reassert themselves. Follow-up visits, symptoms that seem similar to the original symptoms, the illness of a family member, or the anniversary of the date of diagnosis or surgery can trigger concern.

Again, sharing your feelings and concerns with others can help you get through the difficult times. Getting counseling or joining a support group can offer a safe environment where you can discuss your fears, and get help in maintaining your emotional health. Remember to be diligent about your follow-up visits, and to take care of yourself physically and emotionally.